I don't believe it is hopeless and I do think the system can be modernized so that it caters to virtually everyone, but that would take a big committment by people to swallow their conflicting notions and except that students don't learn in a linear age level based formula, nor can every public school teach every child in the vicinity.
It's too expensive, especially when you consider the average special education student costs the system at least 14K a year to educate while the average student is allotted about 3-5K a year depending on where you live.
Like it or not, to be efficient, you need to separate students by ability.
That said, a system should keep a common set of standards that are the minimum and students should learn the by 6th grade or stay at that level until they do learn them. No shame in taking longer, that's life. Again elimnate the age pressure and simply enforce a basic minimum.
Special Ed students should have appropriate standards and expectaions for them. Accomodations can be made, but if their goals aren't realistic, they should be led down a path they can achieve, whatever that is.
After that level all schooling is voluntary, until you qualify for and pick a college to go to. You want to go Math Science, go to Math Science school with a lesser emphasis on the other subjects, same with Reading Writing School with lesser Math expectations, etc. Don't want higher Education? Have local vocational tech schools.
And to satisfy the late bloomers, all the voluntary schools are open to anyone at any time. Change your mind on the Literaure route just enroll in Math or whatever and start over there. Again, no shame in being a year behind.
And it's voluntary so that little johnny who doesn't want to do anything but lay on the couch all day playing video games will have to want to come to school. If he has no desire, then hopefully his parents will be forced to instill some ambition into his little mind or risk the fact that Johnny will eventually be selling their furniture to make a living will they are at work all day. You want Johnny in school and not on the streets, get a backbone and make him go. He won't try hard? well, then he's kicked out. Better try that motivation thing again Mom and Dad.
And to keep costs of schools down, chuck out all the useless crap that they load up schools with. High schools costing hundreds of millions of dollars because they are full of media, high tech wiring, wi-fi, laptops, smart boards, new textbooks every year, the latest this and that all available for everyone whether they need to use it to learn or not. Also, business should have some skin in the game. They should bear a chunk of the cost by sponsoring the schools they benefit from. Colleges too should be taking huge gobs of money away from football players and send it to voluntary schools to educate the students they expect to extort tuition from later.
The vast majority of students an be taught perfectly well by a good teacher with basic textbooks and a cracked blackboard in a concrete room that doesn't leak or get too cold or too hot.
I'm sure their are other ways to change things, but bottom line, change the paradigm. Until that happens all Americans will suffer.
I am Anton Zdravko Martin!
Best meet lifts: Sq 150 Kg (330 lb), Bench 120 Kg (264), DL 160 (352) @89 Kg (197)
Best gym lifts: Sq 375, Bench 275 (pause), DL 370 @205 or less
Goals beyond my wildest dreams, 600 Kg raw total, 200/160/240
Hack away at anything which isn't essential. Do what you love, and do it often. Fazc.
Last edited by MikeM; 12-07-2012 at 02:00 PM.